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Continuing the series of reflections by the RENATE Core Group following their recent Strategic Planning meetings, read firsthand of the grassroots work in anti-trafficking, being achieved by RENATE member Sr. Valeria Gandini and her colleagues in Palermo, Sicily.

 

 
Continuing the series of reflections by the RENATE Core Group following their recent Strategic Planning meetings, read firsthand of the grassroots work in anti-trafficking, being achieved by RENATE member Sr. Valeria Gandini and her colleagues in Palermo, Sicily. Please click here to read the full report.
  

Anonymous ways Foundation, Hungary, re-launch song ''STAY,'' sung by David Henderson, available on YouTube.

 

In preparation for St. Bakhita Day, 8th February, 2017, the Anonymous Ways Foundation, based in Hungary, are re-launching the song ‘’Stay,’’ sung by David Henderson. The lyrics convey love and hope for those who are the victims of human trafficking and exploitation. 
Tune in to hear the song at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZwVsa5w-r4
Prepared by Anne Kelleher, RENATE Communications Person.
 

Smartphone app, TraffickCam to help in the fight against Human Trafficking.

 

Creative thinking contributes to possible activities in helping combat human trafficking. This has been proven true by Kimberly Ritter, a corporate executive who credits Religious sisters (the Foundation of Sisters of St. Joseph) with heightening her awareness about Human Trafficking and motivating her to take preventative action.
Realising hotel rooms can be easily identified by their décor, Ritter and her colleagues at Nix Conference and Meeting Management in St. Louis, USA, devised an ‘’Exchange Initiative’’ whereby Washington University researches created the TraffickCam app, which ‘’allows smartphone users to take photographs of their hotel rooms and add it to a photo database… The database of photographs collected on the TraffickCam app can be used by law enforcement officials to pinpoint the hotel and locate victims of trafficking.’’
For more, information please see:
http://globalsistersreport.org/column/q/trafficking/q-kimberly-ritter-fighting-human-trafficking-smartphone-app-44401
 Prepared by Anne Kelleher, RENATE Communications Person.

Perspectives on a recent visit by RENATE to a Primary Centre for migrants, near Palermo, Sicily.

 


 
RENATE Core Group members and staff working on the RENATE Strategic Plan recently visited a ‘Primary Centre’ near Palermo, Sicily, which provides shelter and support to minors.
The centre, which is categorised as a ‘’Primary Centre,’’ is housed in a property owned by a doctor & leased to a local social co-operative. A non-profit venture, the centre offers shelter and support to minors. Currently the centre is home to fifty youths, who hail from the countries on the African continent, in addition to Syria and Bangladesh.
Each of the teenagers has arrived alone and frightened on the shores of Sicily, having survived perilous land and sea journeys, with memories of experiences and encounters that no human being should ever have to endure.
Some come to Europe looking for their families; some in search of a better life with money and work. Others come with the intention of tracing their family members who have moved on to other EU countries.
Please click here read the full report: Perspectives on a recent visit by RENATE to a Primary Centre for migrants, near Palermo, Sicily. 

Outgoing U.N Secretary General, Mr. Ban Ki-Moon, called on all countries to investigate and prosecute cases of human trafficking.

 

UN Photo/ Mark Garten
                                          UN Photo/ Mark Garten

On the 3rd of January, 2017, the outgoing U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon called on all countries to investigate and prosecute cases of human trafficking and said the most vulnerable victims are women, children and refugees caught up in conflict areas around the globe.
The Secretary General, addressing the 15-member Security Council during an open debate on human trafficking in conflict zones, said extremist groups from the Islamic State to Boko Haram and al-Shabab traffic in persons, especially women and girls, as a weapon of terror and source of revenue.
“We have to fight trafficking for the sake of the victims,” Mr. Ki-Moon said. “When we do, we will also decrease funding for terrorists — and make everyone safer.”
Mr. Ki-Moon, whose term as top U.N. official ended on the 31st of December, 2016,  spoke the same day the Security Council unanimously approved its first-ever draft resolution on human trafficking in conflict situations. (See RENATE website, 6th January, 2017). The resolution seeks to strengthen the United Nation’s ability to counter the phenomenon and bolster the international community’s ability to respond to it.
Yuri Fedotov, executive director of the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime, said the building blocks for fighting international human trafficking can be found in the United Nations’ Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime and its protocol on the practice, which was adopted by the General Assembly and went into effect in 2003.
He said trafficking victims have been detected in 106 different countries and territories worldwide. The good news, he said, is that 158 countries have criminalized most forms of the practice in line with the protocol.
To read the full story by Dave Bryan of the Associated Press on ABC News: Click Here
Adapted by Anne Kelleher, RENATE Communications.
 
 
 

Missing Person’s Families Support Centre consecrates sculpture ‘’Mommy..!’’ in Lithuania, 5th January, 2017. Natalja Kurčinskaja, Director.

 

 
On the 5th of January, 2017, in Vilnius, Lithuania, Fr. Algirdas Toliatas, CO, blessed the sculpture ‘’Mommy,’’ which was specially commissioned to commemorate missing children.” Fr. Algirdas prayed for all the missing children who are alone and lost or maybe even in danger and asked that they be returned safely home. The sculpture had been previously blessed on the 7th of November, 2016, by Pope Francis, who said “I will pray for all of the missing and suffering children of the world.”
Delegates from the Prosecutor General’s office, the Men’s Crisis Centre, and the Vilnius Police Club for Children and Youth attended the consecration ceremony. The children from the Police Club dressed the sculpture with a hat and a scarf, which they had knitted themselves, in order to ‘warm’ the sculpture of a little girl.
The Missing Person’s Families Support Centre organised the blessing with the intention of drawing attention to the problem of missing children in Lithuania. According to the Lithuanian Ministry of Internal Affairs, in 2016 there were 2208 registered cases of missing children (1193 cases of missing girls and 1015 of missing boys). In most cases, the missing children have run away from their homes or from orphanages and are especially vulnerable to human trafficking or other criminal activities.
Through the commemorative sculpture, the Missing Person’s Families Support Centre’s director Natalja Kurčinskaja urges society to pay attention to the call of a small girl who is hugging herself as if she is scared and cold. The cry for mommy on her open lips should remind everyone to pay attention to their children, to listen to them, to hug them and understand them every day, not only when something bad happens.

 
Missing child? Call 116 000. Free helpline for relatives of missing children in all European countries. www.116000.lt
Dingusių žmonių šeimų paramos centras/ Missing Persons’ Families Support Centre,
Žalgirio g. 133,
LT – 08217, Vilnius,
Lietuva/ Lithuania.            
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Reframing Human Trafficking: A Human Rights, Life Course Approach- Dr. Angela Reed, RSM.

 

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Acting co-ordinator of Mercy Global Action at the United Nations, Dr. Angela Reed RSM, shares her knowledge and experience of working in the field of human trafficking and human rights, as she addresses The Centre for Civil and Human Rights at the University of Notre Dame, Indiana.

Dr. Angela has managed a Safe House for women and children, sponsored by her congregation in Melbourne, Australia. An activist, committed to advancing human rights for all and particularly focused on elimination of violence against women, Angela illustrates how her research findings subvert stereotypes of a homogenous sex trafficking experience and points to the need for a life course, rights-based approach to anti-trafficking policy and prevention.
You can hear Dr. Reed’s address here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kLhc-WzIYa8&feature=youtu.be
*Dr. Reed’s visit to Notre Dame was sponsored by the Liu Institute for Asia and Asian Studies and The Centre for Civil and Human Rights.
Adapted by Anne Kelleher, RENATE Communications Person.
 

Dr. Myria Vassiliadou, E.U. Anti-Trafficking Coordinator, issues a statement as U.N. Security Council unanimously adopts its first Resolution on Trafficking in Persons in Conflict Situations.

 

Speaking on behalf of the European Union and its member states, Dr. Myria Vassiliadou, E.U. Anti-Trafficking co-ordinator, issued a statement to the Security Council Ministerial Open Debate on Trafficking in Persons in Conflict Situations, at its meeting on the 20th of December, 2016, at the  U.N. in New York City. The statement calls for commitment to build upon the momentum created by the debate, so as to eradicate human trafficking worldwide. In the statement, the various guises of human trafficking are referenced, including sexual slavery, labour exploitation and organ removal.
In emphasising the critical importance of prevention in the first instance, the statement cites numerous international legal instruments, calling for the deployment of every possible investigative tool and technique in order to prosecute perpetrators. Recognising that political instability and insecurity create ideal environments in which criminal activities can thrive, the statement expresses explicit support for all UN-led efforts to end the current crisis in Syria and Libya. There is a call for strengthening policies and strategies aimed at empowering women and improved understandings of their specific needs and roles in the fight against terrorism and violent extremism.
The statement acknowledges the power of new technologies to facilitate human trafficking and calls for preventative action to eliminate the use of technology by human traffickers and terrorist groups in conflict areas.
Full statement at  http://eu-un.europa.eu/eu-statement-united-nations-security-council-trafficking-persons-conflict-situations
Prepared by Anne Kelleher, RENATE Communications Person.